Economically disadvantaged African American youth are especially vulnerable to the effects of pediatric asthma and are at increased risk for difficulties in daily functioning. Measures of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) yield important information regarding the impact of pediatric chronic illness on daily functioning. It is essential to develop and validate measures of HRQoL to detect the impact of asthma on this vulnerable population.Objective:
To examine the psychometric properties of 2 asthma-specific measures of pediatric HRQoL in a sample of economically disadvantaged African American children diagnosed as having asthma.Methods:
One hundred twenty-seven caregivers completed questionnaires regarding their child's HRQoL, asthma symptoms, health care utilization, and school absences and regarding caregiver emotional distress. The severity of the child's asthma was measured via spirometry.Results:
The Children's Health Survey for Asthma and the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory 3.0 Asthma Module demonstrated adequate internal consistency reliability and validity for the present sample. Lower HRQoL was associated with poorer adherence and more health care utilization, asthma symptom days, school absences, and caregiver distress. Only the Children's Health Survey for Asthma was significantly associated with severity, when defined as airway obstruction.Conclusions:
This study supports the psychometric equivalence of 2 condition-specific measures of HRQoL in a population at high risk for asthma and asthma-related problems. The utility of each measure will depend on the needs of the researcher or physician. Both measures can inform the treatment course, help identify and address barriers to treatment adherence, and inform treatment interventions.